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Congress needs to address consumer data privacy in a responsible and modern manner

In today’s post-industrial economy, you are the product. Data detailing your every move is why 34-year old Mark Zuckerberg is worth $54 billion, and Google co-founder Larry Page is worth $50 billion. Your data is incredibly valuable, and for the most part, it is not even yours. But use of your personal data is governed…

Small businesses need digital tech and data

Digital technology and digital business tools are increasingly powering today’s small businesses. In Virginia, small businesses employ more than 1.5 million people. Many, like the business I started two months ago, use digital technologies to make a “traditional” small business more efficient, easier to manage and more successful. Now we are hoping government regulation of…

Consider the Harms of Digital-Tech Regulations

Digital technology and digital business tools are helping entrepreneurs succeed in ways that were unthinkable when I joined the corporate world 20 years ago. Today millions of small-business owners – including me – rely on digital platforms to build storefronts, market products and services, transact business, and secure financial data. But many are growing nervous,…

Christopher Minott: Protect small businesses from overly aggressive tech policy

Editor’s note: This commentary is by Christopher Minott, who is the director of marketing at SBBNet, a small business with an office in Burlington. SBBNet is a member of the Connected Commerce Council (3C), a nonprofit membership organization that promotes small businesses’ access to essential digital technologies and tools. Small businesses employ 60 percent of Vermont’s workforce,…

Advocates push to beef up privacy regulator

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is under pressure after recent privacy scandals as critics question if the agency has the regulatory teeth to oversee the tech industry’s customer data policies. The new scrutiny also comes with Congress mulling federal privacy legislation. Many privacy and consumer watchdogs say beefing up the agency’s powers and resources to…

Small Businesses Should Have a Bigger Voice on Access to Digital Tools

American small businesses are the backbone of our economy and of our communities. They are also a source of valuable insights and unique experiences, to which we too often pay lip service rather than attention. In Washington, where politicians of every stripe talk about small businesses every chance they get, not enough of them talk…

Chamber of Commerce calls for Congress to block state privacy laws

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is calling on Congress to come up with a federal privacy standard in order to preempt states from passing their own laws governing data collection. The business group released a set of privacy principles on Thursday to guide lawmakers in an effort to avoid a patchwork of state laws. “Advances…

Preserving and Promoting Access to Digital Tools

Starting your own business is a leap of faith no matter who you are, but in the digital age, building a business on your own terms is simpler and faster than ever before. Today’s digital platforms offer inexpensive ways to build a business’ operation and reach consumers. Small business owners can build complete online stores…

Why The Time Is Now For More Technology, Less Government

I am a Fort Worth mom with four young children, but as a digital business owner I am an old-timer. I started my first online business more than a decade ago, and now I am running my fourth online business. I can testify to the extraordinary advances in technology that make doing business so simple…

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